Saturday September 28 2013
Balotelli: 'Thankful to Mancini'

Mario Balotelli is “thankful” to Roberto Mancini, though more for Inter than Manchester City, and explains his first penalty save.

Sky Sport Italia have released new extracts from an interview the Milan striker gave this week, where he publicly apologised for his red card and subsequent three-match ban.

“I had five shots on goal, but it never went in,” he said of the 2-1 defeat to Napoli last Sunday.

“It went that way for Italy too, so evidently this is just an unlucky time for me.”

Pepe Reina also became the first goalkeeper to deny a SuperMario penalty in his senior professional career.

“It had to happen sooner or later, though people really were just waiting for it to happen... It’s true the other night I lost concentration. Reina did well, but I looked him in the eyes only up to a certain point. I then lowered my gaze and it went badly.”

Balotelli’s former Inter and Manchester City Coach Mancini spoke this week about his need to calm down and resist provocation.

“Mancini was the most important Coach in my career. I respect him and am thankful for the opportunity he gave me at Inter. I wanted to play more at Manchester, but there were five strikers and it was difficult to play all the time.

“I didn’t express myself to the full there, even if I put the effort in.”